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  • Tea Facts - An Overview of Tea

    The second most consumed drink in the world is tea. Tea is an infusion of the leaves of Camellia sinensis into the worlds most consumed drink - Water.

    Tea originally came from China and the spread of tea throughout the world can be read about in depth in other parts of the time for coffee and tea site. As a consequence of its wide consumption there are both important economical aspects of tea consumption, and a wide interest in its impact upon peoples health.

    Tea Facts - How Different Types of Tea are Produced

    Tea is produced in three different ways which produce three distinct types: Black, Green and Oolong.

    1. Green Tea: this is produced in a non-oxidising way by drying and steaming the tea leaves.
    2. Black Tea: These teas undergo a fermentation stage that oxidises the leaves before they are dried and steamed.
    3. Oolong Tea: These undergo a part fermentation process before they are dried.

    Distribution of Tea Consumption in the World Today

    Most of the tea that is consumed in the world is of the oxidised black tea variety; this makes up about 80% of all tea consumed. Oolong tea is consumed much less at about 2%. Green teas account for the remainder of tea consumption ~20%. There is also a geographical split with regards to the type of tea that is consumed. Facts about tea consumption:

    1. Green tea is mainly consumed in North east Asia in Japan, Korea and China. And also in the North African country of Morocco
    2. Black tea is mainly drank in the western world on the continents of Europe and North America, and in other North African countries.
    3. Oolong tea is popular in Taiwan and some parts of China.

    Health Benefits of Tea

    There has been much research carried out into the health benefits of teas; this has resulted in tea having a deserved reputation as an healthy beverage. Some of the health benefit facts that have been linked to the consumption of green tea include a reduction in the risk of cancers and cardiovascular disease; a reduction in kidney stones; increased bone mineral density. Increasingly green teas are being drank in the western world for their health benefits.

    Rietveld and Wiseman (2003). Antioxidant effects of tea: Evidence from human clinical trials. J Nutr 133: 3275 to 3284
    Wu and Wei (2002) Tea as a functional food for oral health. Nutrition 18: 443 to 444
    Cabrera et al (2006). Beneficial effects of green tea - a review. J. Am. Coll. Nutr. 25: 79 to 99